Seamus Blackley, original Microsoft Xbox technical director, has gotten eleven of Atari's original game creators together in hopes of bringing the same innovation they brought to gaming in the 70's to the mobile gaming industry today.
Blackley calls his dream team of programmers that make up the startup Innovative Leisure the “Jedi Council,” and is made up of Ed Rotberg (Battlezone), Rich Adam (Gravitar, Missile Command), Owen Rubin (Major Havoc, Space Duel), Ed Logg (Asteroids, Centipede), Bruce Merrit (Black Widow), Dennis Koble (Touch Me, Shooting Gallery), and one developer not associated at all to Atari, Tim Skeely.
The Reason Behind Innovative Leisure
With the help of popular game publisher THQ who made a financial investment in the company, Blackley strongly feels that this group of programmers can bring the old school Atari innovation to the mobile gaming industry. They created some of the most popular games Atari offered back in the 70's, and Blackley sees gamers feeling the same way about the games that will one day be offered by Innovative Leisure.
Show Me the Games
Want a sneak peek at their possible future products? Sorry, not just yet. Blackley knows that the people that brought smash hits like Asteroids and Missile Command to the market back in the 1970's were successful due to the closeness of the group, collaborating and taking risks to try out ideas. He is allowing for the group to take their time throughout the process, bouncing ideas for games off of each other and going with what they feel best.
This time taken to insure the game is successful is important to the future success of the games, as the quality will be evident. With many games made for the mobile platform, they can be hit or miss when it comes to functionality. Blackley wants Innovative Leisure to be known as the brand that offers the best mobile gaming experience possible. Because of this, the games are all still in process of being created, which therefore means there's nothing to get a sneak peek of.
Bringing the Gamers What They Want
Smartphone sales outpaced PC purchases in 2011, proving that there is a shift in how people wish to receive their information. With this shift comes the realization that the logical next move for companies that create games is to dive into the mobile gaming world headfirst, striving to perfect the process to improve the experience for gamers around the world.
Blackley agrees, feeling this team of programmers will succeed in rocking the mobile gaming world. Take the popular Angry Birds game. Millions play this game all over the world, and love it so much, they purchase each edition as it is released. Blackley sees his company having success in this same way, except people will know it isn't just one product that is high quality, but the entire product line itself. Until game ideas are released, we can only imagine the kinds of games that the Jedi Council will bring to the mobile gaming world.